At least that’s the way it started. Amid all the cookie baking, present wrapping and packing last week I got a phone call from a new patron who wanted a tomato piece for a Christmas gift. This is a bad news/good news scenario. I sold the ‘Homegrown Tomatoes’ piece I made, and last time the piece required 68 needle-felted tomatoes. That’s the bad news part. The good news was that I’d had some holiday wine and I love a challenge. I pulled out some felted wool balls I’d made and my red fleece and set to work. The first challenge is to create the tomato shape and get the ‘shoulders’ right. Then I start blending the reds to match my memory of September tomatoes. I love the fact that each fruit is a little different, not just among varieties but even on the same vine. Each one has its own special little lumps and bumps, a lot like people. The different varieties remind me of families, too. You’ve always got a few green ones that you know are good inside but haven’t quite made it in life.
Tomato construction didn’t stop as we drove to see the Grandparents for Christmas. My sweet husband drove for most of the trip and I poked tomatoes while the boys listened to books on tape. The seven hours seems a lot shorter when you’ve got a good book. I got a nice digital camera for a present and I’m looking forward to some higher quality images. It was just a lovely time with lots of hugs, food and cookies. Kathey and Ben Gibson hosted a Christmas dinner this year and everyone had a good time next door. There was enough snow for a few boogie-board runs down the hill, and some new records for distance were set. The major disappointment was that Alvin and the Chipmunks, the Squeakwel, was sold out when we wanted to see it. Some among the group were more disappointed than others (hee hee hee). The drive back was slightly more interesting, with snow falling and lots of cars off the road. A jackknifed semi blocked traffic around Muncie for a while, but we pulled off for dinner and the whole thing only slowed us down a little. It was still a long day.
Now that I’m back in the art studio I’m going to re-launch into a project I started last week for the Trashionista fashion show. The challenge, and I do love a challenge, is to make something that’s elegant and formal out of things you’d normally throw away. I’ve put together a skirt made from old shirts, scraps of animal print fabric and the lining from an old leather skirt. I’m going to embellish the piece with gold pulltabs from my collection and bits from a black lace bra. Some things you just have less use for after ten years of marriage and two kids. Plus, I can thank my kids for the torso part of my creation, which will likely be the top of a black bathing suit whose bottom was worn thin on the rough bottom of the Limestone Lagoon at Bryan Park Pool. I’m pleased that I have my display mannequin for the whole process because I’m really making up the whole thing as I go along. Kind of like the rest of my life!
Until next week…